This is essentially an Apple Genoise, which sounds really complicated, but is actually one of the easiest cakes to make, in my opinion/experience. The only thing you have to do is make sure that you prep everything ahead and take the time to get lots of air into your batter. If you do that, you will be left with a light and fluffy, heavenly textured apple cake.
First off, I’ll give you my great-gran’s tip for a guaranteed light sponge: sieve the flour three times. It sounds like a gimmick, but it makes a huge difference. If you want to guarantee a perfectly light cake, take the extra 60 seconds and sift away! This isn’t just for Genoises (I don’t think she had much truck with ‘fancy’ cakes like that) but it makes it is also an indispensable tip for Victoria sponges and Yorkshire puddings. Get the air into the flour and 50% of your work is done for you.
My other tip is to work fast. You have to take 6 minutes to whisk your eggs with an electric whisk (apparently 8 minutes with a stand mixer, but I’ve never tried that), again to get the air in, and as soon as that is done be sure to get your dry ingredients and apples in quickly and get that cake straight in the oven. Sugar reacts with egg yolks and if you leave the egg/sugar mixture standing there while you get other ingredients sorted out, you’re going to end up with a tough cake. Pre-prepare your ingredients!
Anyway, enough with my rambling, here’s the recipe:
Serve with Gin and Tonic.
This cake is pictured with preserved bilberries, but raspberries and blueberries work very well too.
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